How Long Does Morphea Last?

Morphea is a rare skin disorder that develops hard and discolored lesions usually on the superficial layers of the skin. The lesions are usually superficially confined to the skin and do not go deep into other tissues and organs. It develops on the chest, abdomen, or back. Sometimes, it may develop on the face, neck, hand or feet. Its clauses are not clearly understood. The lesions become so thick or stiff that the movements of joint or muscle underneath may become restricted. It is a self-limiting condition that tends to go on its own.

How Long Does Morphea Last?

How Long Does Morphea Last?

Morphea is a benign condition that has a self-limited course. It does not affect the life expectancy of the affected person. It is a not serious condition. It affects the skin and rarely affects other organs. The lesions are superficial and circular in many cases, that resolves by itself gradually. Such lesions may last for 3 to 5 years. Some people may experience a relapse of such lesions. The color change happened in the skin may remain for many years even the skin condition settles down.

Linea and deep morphea when developing in small children, then, they may interfere with the growth of children. This may cause retardation in growth of children by impaired growth of limbs. The limbs become short in length, stiff and weak. The muscles may get atrophied.

In severe condition, it may cause joint contractures, shortness of limb and atrophy in facial muscles. It may cause disability and deformity in people. It causes deformity mostly in people who have linear or deep morphea. In more severe condition, limbs get stiff and weak due to muscle wasting. It may also cause eye damage and other complications that may lead to death.

Morphea is a rare skin condition characterized by hardening and discoloration of the skin appearing as reddish oval patches. These lesions have centralized whiteness or light discoloration that symbolizes its presence. This condition is limited to the skin and rarely affects other internal organs. It is a form of localized scleroderma. It affects abdomen, chest or back. It may sometimes face, neck, hands or feet. It can resolve on its own in three to five years. In a few cases, it can affect deep into the muscles and bones underneath skin causing joint contractures and muscle wasting. It may also result in cosmetic deformities if not treated well. There is no permanent cure.

Causes Of Morphea

It is no clear reasons that can cause morphea. It is supposed that immune disease can attack the healthy skin mistaking it a foreign body. Collagen is found in the skin to provide structural support to the skin. In this disease, the skin gets hard and thickened due to excess production of collagen. It is not a contagious disease and it does not spread with touch or other means. Autoimmunity, trauma, injury, infection, cancer, abnormal genes, radiation, and medicines can be the causes of morphea.

Symptoms Of Morphea

Morphea represent the following symptoms-

  • The lesions are localized and circumscribed.
  • They are usually oval shaped.
  • They are limited to the skin.
  • They do not extend to other organs.
  • They appear on the skin of face, neck, arms legs, abdomen or back.
  • They are hardened and firm to touch.
  • They are discolored usually reddened or white.
  • The lesions have a light colored center compared to its surroundings.
  • The lesions cause loss of hair in their area.
  • They become so hard that restrict the movement of the muscles and joints under the skin.


Morphea is an unusual disorder of skin which appears on the abdomen, trunk, and chest or back of the body. Its lesions are reddish oval shaped with a light center. The lesions are hard and firm. It is a self-limiting condition that ends in three to five years on its own.

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Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:March 8, 2019

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